Bonneville Power Administration officials are stopping short of calling it “over,” but they are cautiously optimistic that the contentious season known as oversupply – when too much hydro power on the system prompting calls for wind farm shutdowns – may be coming to an end.
In a biweekly call last week with stakeholders, Steve Barton, an operations research analyst with BPA, called the season for wind energy curtailment “pretty much over,” according to a report in SNL Financial.
Doug Johnson, a BPA spokesman said Monday, “We are optimistic, but we still have a month or so where oversupply could happen.”
In all, BPA asked wind farm operators to power down four times so far this spring starting at the end of April, for a total loss of 20,333 megawatt hours of wind energy generation.
As part of a settlement with wind power companies, a list that includes Pacific Power, NextEra Energy Resources LLC, EDP Renewables North America LLC, Invenergy Wind North America LLC and Iberdrola Renewables Inc., BPA will provide some compensation for the lost generation opportunities.
If the season is over – something that a heavy June rainfall could reverse – it will have proven to be much tamer in terms of oversupply compared to the heavy spring runoff of 2011 during which 97,557 megawatt hours of wind energy generation was lost due to curtailment.
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